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uOttawa Kanata North ramping up Smart Connected Vehicles Innovation Lab

If your company operates in the CAV industry, uOttawa wants to talk


Kanata North is a growing hub for connected and autonomous vehicle (CAV) innovation, but what does local industry need to take it to the next level?

Look at any successful technology ecosystem that has come before, anywhere else in the world, and one consistent theme emerges – the process of getting great products to market is greatly enhanced by collaboration and knowledge transfer between academia and industry.

That’s why the University of Ottawa established its Kanata North campus – to be at the heart of the action and help local tech clusters accelerate development and shorten time to market.

As its next step in this mandate, uOttawa-Kanata North is ramping up for the late summer 2021 launch of its Smart Connected Vehicles Innovation Lab.

This 4,000-square-foot expansion at 535 Legget Dr. includes meeting and collaboration space and simulators to put CAV research to the test before it hits the road. 


“The Lab will be open-access, providing a space for students, researchers, the CAV community and our partners to convene and collaborate,” said Veronica Farmer, uOttawa’s director of partnerships and commercialization. “Our proximity to the Kanata North CAV cluster and the public test track makes our lab a great addition to the existing ecosystem and complements the pursuit of CAV innovation in Ottawa, Canada’s capital.” 

The Lab will be staffed by a team of 15 graduate students, post-doctoral fellows and research associates led by uOttawa associate professor Burak Kantarci. He already has an impressive track record working with local companies on application-based R&D.

His research team with diverse experience and skills will cover a variety of areas critical to the development and commercialization of CAV technologies – wireless networks, IoT, mobile computing, cybersecurity, AI, signal processing, machine/deep learning for mobile systems, and cloud and fog systems.

This combination of expertise and resources provides the local CAV industry with a cost-effective and low-risk environment in which to advance R&D projects to a high Technology Readiness Level, said Kantarci.

“We are encouraging industry to come work with us in the space, both physically and virtually, to de-risk development, advance technology and solutions and accelerate prototyping for faster time to market.”

The potential outcomes encompass much more than just wheels on the road, Kantarci added, with applications in a number of areas related to connectivity, smart cities, public safety, road management and disaster resiliency.

“At uOttawa, we have already had successful collaborations with industry in the areas of cybersecurity, cyber-physical systems, vehicular sensing and data analytics, and the outcome has been either joint patents, improved services/solutions or joint publications,” he said. “Many of the commercialization and technical challenges that the CAV industry is facing right now, we will be able to address with the range of capabilities we are bringing to the table.”

Come talk

uOttawa’s Kanata North Smart Connected Vehicles Innovation Lab is expected to open by late summer, 2021. But its team is active in research and ready now to engage with local industry and discuss research opportunities and collaborations that will lead to new innovations with global impact.

Learn more by contacting Veronica Farmer, director of partnerships and commercialization, at